Airbnb bans parties and events in homes booked on website

Occupancy capped at 16 people as home rental company tries to enforce social distancing

Airbnb  said it would expel or take legal action against hosts and guests who do not comply with the new rules.  Photograph: Getty Images

Airbnb said it would expel or take legal action against hosts and guests who do not comply with the new rules. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Airbnb has announced a global ban on parties and events listed on its platform in a bid to comply with Covid-19 health protocols.

The home-sharing company said the ban, which applies to future bookings, will limit occupancy to 16 people and will remain in effect indefinitely. Citing changing public health mandates on gatherings, Airbnb said some customers have chosen to “take bar and club behaviour to homes, sometimes rented through our platform”.

The company said it would expel or take legal action against hosts and guests who do not comply with the new rules. “We think such conduct is incredibly irresponsible,”

Airbnb said in a blog post Thursday. “We do not want that type of business, and anyone engaged in or allowing that behaviour does not belong on our platform.”

Airbnb has also updated its policies in light of the pandemic, removing both the “event friendly” search filter and “parties and events allowed” house rules.

Unauthorised parties have long been prohibited by most hosts. Airbnb cracked down on “party houses” last year after a fatal Halloween night shooting at a listed home in California.

The coronavirus-induced lockdowns have hurt Airbnb’s core business, which makes money from people renting residences to travellers. Sales growth slowed and profit was squeezed as travel came to a halt around the world amid widespread shelter-in-place orders to curb the spread of Covid-19.

In a sign that it expects to bounce back, the company filed confidentially for an initial public offering on Wednesday. – Bloomberg